PRESENT DAY: Cenozoic Era / Anthropocene Period / Holocene Epoch
Explore the tall tails of these lost legends at Zoo Knoxville! Marvel at over twenty realistic, animatronic dinosaurs stationed all around the zoo. Get a membership or buy tickets today and prepare for months of Jurassic fun before they disappear…again!
Join this epic, limited-time adventure! Discover fun facts about the prehistoric animals, enjoy kid-friendly activities, and graze among the greats. Follow the dinosaur footprints all around the zoo and see if you can spot all 22 ancient creatures!
Paleontologists have uncovered roughly 700 dinosaur species that roamed the earth eons ago, residing on all seven continents. When dinosaurs first appeared over 250 million years ago, they all existed on a single continent called Pangaea.
English naturalist Sir Richard Owen coined the name “dinosaur” in 1842, combining the Greek word deinos meaning “fearfully great” and saurus meaning “lizard.”
Different dinosaur species appeared throughout what is known as the Mesozoic Era spanning 250 million to 65 million years ago. This era is divided into three distinct periods: Triassic, Jurassic, and Cretaceous.
Throughout the Mesozoic era, five major extinction events occurred: the Ordovician-Silurian (450 Million Years Ago), Late Devonian (375 MYA), Permian-Triassic (225 MYA), Triassic-Jurassic (201 MYA), and Cretaceous-Paleogene (66 MYA).
All non-avian dinosaurs went extinct about 66 million years ago. Modern birds are a kind of dinosaur because they share a common ancestor with non-avian dinosaurs.
a year of wild fun
Access an entire year of wild fun by becoming a Zoo Member. Every zoo visit is an opportunity to engage in unique educational experiences and create lasting memories. If you visit twice a year or more, your membership pays for itself!
Zoo Knoxville is committed to protecting wildlife and saving species from extinction locally and globally. Together with other members of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA), we are part of the largest conservation movement on the planet, working to maintain and nurture a healthy, genetically diverse population in zoos. Zoo Knoxville is also an active participant in Saving Animals from Extinction (SAFE), among other conservation initiatives. Your membership directly supports Zoo Knoxville and our conservation programs.